In its most recent move to tackle irresponsible driving attitudes and to reduce the number of people injured in road traffic accidents, the government has announced plans to give police officers powers to issue on the spot fines for careless driving. Under the plans, motorists who tail-gate, undertake and cut other drivers up would get an instant fine of £80 as well as three points on their licence.
Currently motorists who drive carelessly are prosecuted through the courts. The new proposals will leave that option open, but only for those wanting to contest the offence. According to Transport Secretary Philip Hammond, the fines would help reduce the pressure on police traffic officers. Speaking to the BBC he said “We're going to crack down on the most reckless and dangerous drivers, we're going to support those who are basically law-abiding but who perhaps have an occasional lapse.”
As well as the announcement of on the spot fines, a range of other measures are due to be introduced including wider use of retraining and education for motorists who commit less serious offences. In serious cases, the courts will be encouraged to seize vehicles and order that disqualified drivers retrain and re-take their tests before they get their licence back.
With deaths and serious injuries from road traffic accidents falling year on year in the UK, it will be interesting to see whether these new measures help to further reduce this total. If you have been involved in a road traffic accident and you would like to discuss the possibility of making a compensation claim, talk to a personal injury lawyer.
Author: Neil Worrall